Wounded Mushfiqur the hero as Bangladesh upset Pakistan
Mushfiqur Rahim top-scored for Bangladesh with 99 in a sensational 37-run win over Pakistan in their Asia Cup Super Four clash.
The win means Bangladesh progress to their third successive Asia Cup final.
Pakistan started the match stronger reducing Bangladesh to 12 for 3 in the fifth over through a brace of wickets for Junaid Khan and a single scalp for Shaheen Afridi who castled Monimul Haque (5).
Mohammad Mithun (60) chipped in with his second vital fifty of the Asia Cup and again shared a big partnership with Mushfiqur as he had done against Sri Lanka.
Mushfiqur struggled with a calf injury during his innings and would leave the field during Pakistan’s reply.
Junaid (4/19) would end as the pick of the Pakistan bowlers as Bangladesh posted 239 all out.
Pakistan’s reply got off to a nightmare start as Mehedi Hasan removed Fakhar Zaman with the fifth ball of the innings and two balls into Mustafizur Rahman’s first over Babar Azam (1) was trapped leg before.
Skipper Sarfraz Ahmed became Mustafizur’s second victim in the fourth over and Pakistan were 18 for 3 and in real trouble.
Imam Ul Haq just about held the top order together to keep Pakistan in the game, putting on 67 with Shoaib Malik (30) for the fourth wicket and 71 with Asif Ali (31) for the sixth.
It was the wicket of Asif, stumped off the bowling of Mehedi that triggered the collapse.
Barring an awful dropped catch by Liton Das behind the stumps Bangladesh were tight in the field and kept pressure on Pakistan throughout.
Mustafizur (4/43) was the pick of the Bangladesh bowlers. The chase fizzled out and Pakistan reached 202/9 in their fifty over.
The Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Mortaza was proud of his charges after they earned a place in the final: “I think we changed our combination a bit. Usually I open the bowling, but today we started with Miraz. The bowlers did a good job, especially when we didn’t get the runs. But Mushi and Mithun batted really well. We can be proud of our fielding today. Long time we haven’t seen this quality of fielding in our time, so hopefully the boys can understand the value of good fielding. We still need to improve a bit of our batting and bowling. I was lucky that I didn’t drop my catch, because Shoaib Malik was in such good form, but all over the fielding was really good. We always know that India are a serious side. We don’t have Shakib and Tamim but hopefully the boys can show their character on friday.”
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